Thai Man Kills Baby Daughter, Then Himself, Live On Facebook

The incident comes after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to prevent the network from promoting a culture of voyeurism

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at a conference in California — REUTERS
Apr 25, 2017 at 11:05 AM ET

A man in Phuket, Thailand filmed himself killing his 11-month-old daughter and then himself on Facebook Live, Thai police said Tuesday, the latest incident of people using the social platform to publicize their crimes.

Thai police said they were alerted to the video by friends of the man, identified as Wuttisan Wongtalay, 20. They rushed to an abandoned hotel near the international airport on Monday afternoon where they found the two bodies and a smartphone propped up against the wall.

“They had already died when I arrived there,” Lieutenant Jullaus Suvannin, one of the first on the scene, told AFP. The man had been fighting with the mother of the murdered child before hanging himself and his baby daughter, the police said.

Phuket’s governor asked Thais to refrain from sharing the four-minute clip of the murder-suicide, which was still circulating on social media Tuesday afternoon. The video was removed at 5:00 pm local time, after being viewed hundreds of thousands of times.

“This is an appalling incident and our hearts go out to the family of the victim. There is absolutely no place for acts of this kind on Facebook and the footage has now been removed,” Facebook said in a statement.

Last month, Facebook announced it would be using artificial intelligence to analyze and identify posts containing disturbing content, including rape, suicide, and killings. It said it would also integrate real-time suicide prevention tools into Facebook Live to prevent people from taking their own lives, and would initiate a program to allow the company to remove content from the site before hitting the live stream.

The incident in Thailand comes just days after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to strategize on ways to prevent the social media network from promoting crimes like murder and rape. He was responding to the social media spectacle surrounding the saga of the “Facebook killer,” in which an Ohio man used the platform to broadcast footage of himself walking up to an elderly man in the street and shooting him dead.

But Facebook, like other social media companies, has also been wary of policing the internet.

“We have a lot more to do here,” Zuckerberg said last week. “We’re reminded of this week by the tragedy in Cleveland. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Robert Godwin Sr., and we have a lot more work and we will keep doing all we can to prevent tragedies like this from happening,” he said, referring to the victim of last week’s murder in Ohio.